Q&A with an Inbox Brain User: Mortgage broker

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is Sharon Thorner and I’m a mortgage broker in Buffalo, New York. I’ve been a broker for over 8 years now and love helping people realize their dream of owning a home.

When I’m not working, I love spending time with my baby boy Jackson who is 9 months old and my husband James. When I can squeeze it in, I love running along the waterfront and skiing in the winter.

Q1. Why did you start using Inbox Brain?

A1. Primarily to save time. I recently became a mother and now have much more responsibilities at home now that before. I did a self audit of my work routine looking for inefficiencies that I could eliminate in order to become more productive with the same or less time than I had before. Now that I have a child I don’t have the luxury of taking a day off or procrastinating. All of my time at work has to be spent as best possible.

Q2. How did you find Inbox Brain?

A2. I found it in the Google Chrome store, it had good reviews so I Googled it and did a bit of research on the product before starting the free trial.

Q3. With similar tools in the Chrome Store, why did you choose to try Inbox Brain?

A3. There were a few other tools I looked at but either they had an external dash which I didn’t want, they didn’t have all the features I was looking for or they looked crappy. There’s a bunch of free/cheap tools but I don’t trust those. I don’t want to put mine and my clients information in jeopardy to save $50 a month.

Q3. How long have you been using IB?

A3. About a year now.

Q4. What’s your favourite feature of the software?

A4. The customized sequences and the open/link click tracking. Those have been great for me. I talked about the need to be more efficient at work and these have automated my sales process. A lot of my new business is from network referrals and it’s very important to me that I follow up with these leads.

Not only for the new business but also for the professional courtesy. If someone is sending me a contact, they’re vouching for me as a mortgage professional and I don’t want to disappoint them. It also keeps the referrals coming in.

InboxBrain is essentially like having my own executive assistant but for about $500 a year. I spend more than that on lunches in a month.

The link tracking is a subtle but powerful feature. When I see that someone has opened and clicked on an attachment that I sent I know that they’re interested and maybe something got in the way of them completing and returning said document. In these cases I send a gentle reminder or give them a call to see if they have any questions or need clarification on anything. Getting a mortgage is usually the largest loan an individual will take out in there life so they usually have a lot of questions and the sales cycle can be long.

Q5. Before IB, what was your routine for following up with leads and existing clients?

A5. I wouldn’t say I had a defined routine for following up with clients/new leads. I’d usually write a note on a sticky note and stick it to my monitor or use a digital on my mac. If not I’d force myself to remember to email someone a second or third time. It was pretty stressful to tell you the truth.

Q6. As a sales person, can you quantify how much Inbox Brain has helped you earn, if anything?

A6. I’d rather not disclose exact figures but I will say that it saves me a couple clients a month. So probably 20-25 new clients this year are from Inbox Brain related features. Likely better results than if I had hired and trained an assistant. And definitely more cost effective.

Q7. Do you prefer to pay monthly or yearly for your subscription?

A7. After the trial and getting familiar with the product I went for the yearly subscription. InboxBrain is essentially like having my own executive assistant but for about $500 a year. I spend more than that on lunches in a month.

Q8. Apart from mortgage brokers, who do you think can benefit from using IB?

A8. Any type of broker/agent would love this extension. Real estate agents, insurance brokers, you name it. Any person who prospects through email would find this helpful.


Sharon Thorner – Mortgage Broker – Buffalo, New York


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